Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Zucchini Muffins - Healthy & Delicious

I wanted something healthy and delicious to do with my garden zucchinis (or my friend's garden zucchini's).  This is IT!  Very yummy.  My family has been LOVING muffins lately--with school back in, it is a great option for a healthy school snack to take to school, a quick breakfast, a substitute for a sandwich in the lunch box, or a great after-school snack.  Muffins have been wonderful!

These are fabulous.  My first batch I added walnuts and just a small handful of chocolate chips, but it really didn't need it! This is like Zucchini Bread in a Muffin!  Yum!!

YIELD: 3 dozen muffins (normal cup-cake size)

ingredients:
     DRY
3 cups whole-wheat flour
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 Tbsp. cinnamon
1 Tbsp. +  3/4 tsp. baking powder
1 1/2 tsp. baking soda
3/4 tsp. salt

     WET
4 1/4 cups (apx) shredded zucchini (apx. 1 large, 2 regular)
1 1/2 cup fat-free milk
6 Tbsp. oil
6 Tbsp. honey
3 eggs

     OPTIONAL
Walnuts (a cup or so)
Chocolate Chips (1-2 cups)

directions:
1. Preheat oven to 400*F.  Prepare a muffin pan/stone with cooking spray--spray it thoroughly (or use cupcake liners).

2.  Mix all of the dry ingredients together in a large bowl, whisking until sifted through and combined.

3. Mix together the wet ingredients.  Pour into the large dry ingredient bowl--just until it is moist.  At this point, add any optional ingredients and stir in.

4.  Scoop batter into the prepared muffin pan, filling 2/3 full, and bake for 15 minutes.  Remove from muffin pan quickly.  Let cool. 

*Although I haven't (yet) frozen these, I have frozen muffins and zucchini bread in the past with much success!

this recipe was adapted from: Kathie's Zucchini Muffins

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Thursday, January 8, 2015

Crockpot Split Pea and Ham Soup

I love this recipe!  This is my "go to" for pea soups.  If you don't want ham in it, simply leave it out and add a little more salt (to taste).  Very yummy!

ingredients:
1 ham hock or shank*
1 onion, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves
2 carrots, diced
1 stick of celery, finely diced
3 bay leaves
500g dry split peas
1 1/2 litres water
1/4 tsp. ground pepper
1 tsp. salt (more to taste)

directions:
1.  Chop all the ingredients and place in your crock pot.

2.  Let cook on low for 8-10 hours or on high for 4-5 hours.  

3.  Remove ham hock/shank, let cool for apx 10 minutes.  Harvest the meat off the hock/shank, set aside.

4.  Peas and soup will be very soft and mushy.  With a potato masher, mash them to the desired consistency.  If you like a very smooth soup, you can use an immersion blender.  Add the ham back into the soup.  

Serve with a fresh loaf of bread, dinner rolls, crescent rolls, etc.

*Hocks or Shanks are sold in the store where you find the ham!  They are very inexpensive (under $3 for 2 hocks or shanks).  I have found shanks are meatier.  

*Shanks/Hocks can be found where you buy ham--there's usually a special ham case near the meat department.  Shanks/Hocks are very affordable $2-$3 for two!  I've found ham shanks have more meat than hocks do.  If you don't want to use a shank/hock, or if you like even more ham, add a small bag of the pre-diced ham you can buy in the deli or ham section of the store.  Yum!

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